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US Defense Department ramps up 5G testing

It now has 12 military bases experimenting with 5G.

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More 5G experimenting is being done by the Defense Department.

Graphic by Pixabay/Illustration by CNET

The US Department of Defense is bringing 5G tests and experiments to seven more military bases across the nation, it announced Wednesday. It brings the DOD's test sites up to 12. The department says 5G will help maintain "America's military and economic advantages."

5G, already available in some parts of the US by Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile/Sprint, is being tapped by smartphones to provide faster speeds and more capacity. Defense says it's testing both military and commercial applications of 5G.

Some of the new tests announced this week include augmented reality for military training, wireless connections for tactical operations, aircraft mission readiness, pier connectivity, mobile data security and spectrum sharing.

The seven new sites are at Fort Hood, Texas; Naval Base Norfolk, Virginia; Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii; Joint Base San Antonio, Texas; the National Training Center at Fort Irwin, California; Camp Pendleton, California; and Tinker Air Force Base, Oklahoma.

The Defense Department had previously announced the following test bases: Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada; Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington; Hill Air Force Base, Utah; Naval Base San Diego, California; and Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany, Georgia.

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